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Used book store looks to fill a niche for local readers
book store
Valerie and Tim Brown are hoping their business venture Lightly Used Books finds a favorable audience in Turlock. - photo by SABRA STAFFORD / The Journal
When Valerie and Tim Brown started contemplating what type of business to open, they didn’t have to look far for inspiration. The myriad of books stacked up in the shelves of their home served as the perfect muse.The couple just opened Lightly Used Books in downtown Turlock and are hoping their love of reading translates into a successful business venture.“It was an idea we had both toyed with for a while, but it wasn’t until the last few months that we really started to think we could make a go of it,” Valerie Brown said. “I had just earned my teaching credential, but given the market, it didn’t seem like too many options would be available, so we thought this is the time to start it.”Brown says that the teaching credential is actually coming in handy, especially when it comes to finding stock for the shelves.“In the program, you learn a little about everything, which gives me a good basis for all our different subjects,” she said.The pair has put in some long days and nights to get the store up and running. They took over the space at 141 N. Center St. on July 14 and five days later they opened their doors for business for the first time.“We were wading through books during those days and nights,” Valerie Brown said.The shelves in the rustic themed store have been filled with a plethora of titles – from the classics to new releases and from self-help to how-to, the pair have rounded up a collection that they feel will fill the fancy of just about every reader.In addition to their book supply, the couple is also selling antiques and jewelry designed and made by Valerie.The store is offering an exchange program for the book lovers out there. The store will accept lightly used books in exchange for store credit.In a market that is largely dominated by corporate book stores and online retailers, the couple has faith that they’ll find a market.“Given the economic troubles right now, a store like this is going to fill a niche for people,” Valerie Brown said.“The people who have come in so far love the place,” Tim Brown said. “Now the pressure is on us to deliver.”To contact Sabra Stafford, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2002.